No, Minister?

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by Draft Dodger, Jun 24, 2013.

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  1. A lot of people despair for our political class, believing it corrupt, self serving and out of touch. its not an uncommon view that this group is made up of a small pool of professional politicos who occaissionally swap jobs with one another and are more interested in staying in power for powers sake rather than a desire to serve their country, yet we live in a democratic system in which anyone can participate, so why are so few people politically active? this site is made up by users who in one form or another are serving, or have served, their country, so why the aversion to serving our country by giving it direction?

    would you consider getting involved in your local council? are you already? if not why?
    are you a member of a political party? would you consider joining a party with an aim to eventually trying to run for election?

    personally i struggle because i dont feel any party really fits my views correctly enough and to join a party i would need to make some compromises (which is, to my mind, a lot if what democracy is about), also at this time in my life i'm not able to commit myself but its something i could see myself getting involved in later when i fancy some free lunches.
  2. Why not start with the parish council? Not too much work but some (small) involvement in local affairs.
    (No free lunches for the council I joined. We voted not to take the money).
  3. Interesting post with some valid points. Many are disillusioned with "professional" politician who are only interested in what they can get out of it, but we need a real change in attitudes before Joe Public will do anything about it - the "my dad voted for a Labour monkey so I vote for Labour monkeys as well" brigade really do more harm that good IMHO.

    I think one of the problems lies in the fact that we are effectively a two party state with both parties stuffed full of lying weasels in grey suits (or the female version thereof) and who are effectively interchangeable and who only consider the short term with regard to either retaining power or getting re-elected and party ideology and not what is actually likley to be best for the country as a whole.

    Interesting post, some thought provoking questions.

    I'll give you an hour before someone has crayoned over your thread, resorted to personal abuse, posted pics of sink estate slappers or mentioned THAT rifle...

    Now, time to pull up a comfy chair and settle down to watch the show.


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  4. its more because i'm moving around a lot with work at the moment and will be for at least the next couple of years but its something i'd definately think about once i actually know where i'm going to be living.
  5. Men in white suits excepted, I think most arrsers would probably regard "Politician" as a term of abuse.

    Looking at this bunch, I sometime shudder to think what our Fathers and Grandfathers fought for?

    ( probably with an SMLE Rodney?)
  6. You could always go down the independent route? However I think the chances of making any impact are going to be far greater within a well established party even if your views don't quite fit. Politics is often about compromise, people vote for the party with which they feel most closely reflects their needs (or sadly more often the case, they don't vote at all). I'd agree with the suggestion about parish councils and work your way up from there.
  7. if enough of us want electoral reform, we'll get it, but we wont get anything without being involved. as for serving the nation, not the public (which are two very different things), i've been listening to winston churchills account of the second world war on audible and i find some of the political stuff as interesting as his accounts of the various theatres of war, especially all the stuff about the pre-war british public having a strong pacifist feeling which was one of the reasons why we were so ill prepared when war came, so trying to win votes clearly isnt a new thing and is probably something we just have to accept as part of the democratic system.

    the disconnect between people and politicians is just as much the voting publics fault as it is the politicians if they are unwilling to be involved in our political system (and i speak as someone who votes but isnt a member of a party or does anything in my community so i'm not exonerating myself), yet even though people wont get involved the harbour intense levels of disconntent with that political system.
  8. in my own case i think i would eventually sit down, decide between the two parties i feel most closely reflect my own views and take it from there at a local level. i wholeheartedly agree with your point about compromise, its one of the main reasons i didnt have a problem with the coalition, it really pissed me off when there was talk of a re-show as if the british public had gotten it wrong.

    my more general question was, why arent people involved in our system when the direction of the country riles them so much? many people will rail against what our governments do but few of them would even consider writing to their MP.
  9. Going into politics is something I'd consider doing in my early 40's, at the moment I'm 36 years old and busy working abroad in order to insure my mortgage is paid off before I'm old and grey.

    My father voted labour until we moved 'down south', his views have subsequently gotten far more conservative; but he won't admit it either to himself or his family. From a northern (Cumbria not the Manchester 'midlands' (northerners my arse)) working class family: two of my brothers and I are conservative, my sister completed a degree in Theology (so is now some freaky ******* liberal, although since becoming a parent she is swinging more to the right), my little brother is a student at university and has no interest other than drinking & shagging (which is to be quite frank the right attitude), he has no interest in politics at the moment, but time will tell.

    My in-laws are both retired professionals and both have just finished a tenure in local government, my mother-in-law's term as mayor has also just ended.

    I like to think that I've a good head on my shoulders, have seen the world, am reasonably bright and have a good sense of what is right and wrong (which probably makes me eminently unsuitable for politics). As a soldier I had pride in my country and what it stood for, since 'growing up' I've seen that many of our honourable members of parliament are anything but. I could make a difference but I don't think I could lie to the same degree as 'professional politicians' do in order to get the votes.
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  10. I think there is a general sense of political apathy amongst the public. People forget about the past and the fact people used to have no say over what happens, and now that they can have a say it's easier to moan to the person sitting next to you than to take an active involvement in changing things. The best thing you can do I think is trying to lead by example - if people complain about something, encourage them to write and try to change things. You can also start petitions and if you do join a party in some form you'll be in a stronger position to change things from within - assuming you can get around the corruption.
  11. Maybe because as members of the Armed Forces we are not allowed to become members of any Political Parties
  12. I think that most people KNOW it is a corrupt sinkhole. Can it be changed? I would doubt it is possible from within; the only way in is to fit in, and I would imagine that dodgy types who may rock the party boat are filtered out long before they can do any lasting damage/change to the system as it stands.

    Virtually all political systems become self serving. Political systems are started to support society like scaffolding supports a structure but gradually the structure ends up supporting the scaffolding. From 1911 when the MPs realised there was money to be taken from the taxpayer several centuries of political good work has collapsed in less than 100 years.

    The commons, a misnomer if ever there was one, is a massive con laying out laws that come from Brussels, focus groups and at the behest of big business. How many MPs are getting money from say eco-energy and might they be the same ones involved in making renewables easier to get set up and more profitable for shareholders? I couldn't say. Or indeed in these times of austerity how many in the UK actually want overseas aid to be ring fenced?

    Local government is the same, with huge wages going to functionaries and councillors able to live off their 'expenses'; no real ethos of doing it for your local community not with the possibility of a seat in the big house with all that that promises.

    How many ex-MPs have fallen on hard times? Is this class of professional the only one to have none of its members from the last 50 years die in poverty, victims of the society they themselves have helped form? Even the legal trade has a few who are reduced to utter penury if only through drink and drugs, let alone utter incompetence.

    I cannot see the system falling from within; watch the parties close ranks if an outside threat to their privilege is perceived as in the expenses scandal with the Leaveson report a possible result, the press is warned off and potentially muzzled in future despite being a minor player in the hacking world it now appears and possibly the inquiry knew about this even as they held forth on standards.

    The end may come when the public realise that the last place in the UK where one can have a smoke with a pint in a building kept safe by the last real policemen and possibly the only place which will be kept safe from water shortages and power outages is the House of Commons. Then perhaps there will be a massive reaction, but I doubt it.
  13. I loath politicians - pretty much all of them. But I have a suspiscion that we've got what we deserve. I loath the meeja too: put the two of them together and you've got the problems illustrated above. The meeja have decided that I need to know the intricacies of political decision making reported in primary school English and logic in a 200 word article crammed in under a picture of a bird with her norks out. Apparently it's in my interest and I have the right to know. Then you've got half witted TV and Radio interviewers with more than an eye on their ratings stirring the pot. Of course, this makes me an expert and I am instantly qualified to ask senior political figures simpleton questions and demand an equally simpleton answer. And if I don't get it (or the answer I didn't want) then that gives me the absolute right to be outraged and contact the meeja to tell them so. And so the interminable circle of crap goes on.

    We voted them in so I do think we ought to let them get on with it accepting that sometimes, poor judgements and decisions will be made (Churchill had one or two himself!). Wouldn't work until the end of the pogron to clear the current bunch of clowns out though.

    I have a friend who was cajolled into standing for local election. He would have made a bloody good representative and asked some very proper and pertinent questions of those who would have been extremely uncomfortable with such honesty. He worked hard at canvassing only to be sidelined when a character of more suitable character (=glamour) presented themselves - and he's a complete cock - the glamourous one that is.

    So, state control of the media, extermination of the political classes to be replaced by the proletariat it is then. Mildly depressing innit?

    But if Draft Dodger promises to bring back a decent rifle, he'll get my vote - it's a start.
  14. that's fair enough, so will you be joining one when you leave?

    politicians have resigned from posts and in many cases from parties over disagreements with policy so i think there are plenty of people who become politicians who are willing to "rock the boat" and stand up for their beliefs and what they believe are the beliefs of their constituents. look at the tories on gay marriage and europe, there are MPs rebelling all over the shop.

    on your other point, so you dont think that a democratic system can be changed? i understand the argument that they're all the same but if you and everyone else feels like that, stand for election, form your own party, become PM and be different if enough people agree with you.

    surely the rise of UKIP (regardless of whether or not it will be long lived) shows that the political establishment is not set in stone.